ready to replace shavings with sand/fill dirt.....need help!

Discussion in 'Managing Your Flock' started by k2chickens, Aug 16, 2010.

  1. k2chickens

    k2chickens Songster

    Apr 22, 2009
    New Castle, Indiana
    Well I have an inclosed room with a concrete floor that's 15ft long by 10ft wide. I am fed up with shaveings and to me haveing a dirt/sand filled floor would be better dust bathing and help keep bugs away, plus I think my girls would enjoy it a lot more than poopy shaveings. My question is, should I fill the first few inches with fill dirt then an inch or so of play sand? Or just all sand??? I think all sand would get too expensive if you ask me cuz I have a lot of square feet to cover. Or, could you guys make the best/cheapists solution for me? I'm not sure how much fill dirt is, all I know is my chickens desirve a better floor than what they have now.
  2. Mattemma

    Mattemma Crowing

    Aug 12, 2009
    I bought bags of general purpose sand from home depot. I think it would be far cheaper to get a truck load of sand from a local gravel place. I don't know about mixing the dirt and sand.I do know our local fill dirt has far more clay,and it would be better get get unscreened topsoil. I ended up removing the sand from the shed due to a funky smell from the poop/sand,but it is probably not an issue with everyone. I would have prefered the sand.It was cooler for them,and I could scoop the poop easy. I have considered Swheat Scoop cat litter,but that would REALLY be expensive.
  3. kristen2678

    kristen2678 Songster

    Apr 26, 2009
    North Berwick Maine
    I'd say all sand. I'm considering sand in the run myself. The grass is long gone and they are digging quite a bit in the dirt. Mine free range too, so they are only in there part time. I think an inch or two of sand would be mixed with that dirt in no time. I'm shooting for 4, but it's going to be $$$.
  4. k2chickens

    k2chickens Songster

    Apr 22, 2009
    New Castle, Indiana
    Quote:That's what I was afraid of, I figured topsoil first would be the cheaper way to go than all sand.
  5. k2chickens

    k2chickens Songster

    Apr 22, 2009
    New Castle, Indiana
    any more ideas?
  6. Mtn Cur

    Mtn Cur Songster

    Apr 5, 2010
    Seymour, Tn
    If your talking about in the coop I would go with just(and I would use river sand) sand. If your talking about in a run I would use a base of "crusher run" gravel and then sand. Fill dirt around here is poor dirt usually clay- its real bad to pack in, and would not make a good base due to it not known for drainage.
  7. stevin

    stevin Songster

    Sep 11, 2009
    Dartmouth, Ma
    i would go all sand. the reason i say that is because i have roughly 3-3 1/2" of sand and the chickens scratch/dig right thru that to the point that they are digging up the 3/4" gravel i have below the sand which i placed as a base to help with drainage. if you were to go with atleast 3" of sand you will need roughly 1.5 yards(1.38 to be exact) of course sand. that will cost you approx $20-$25. i purchased 2.5 yards and that ran me $35. i still have a small pile of leftover sand that i use to occassionally fill any lowspots in the run from all the dustbathing, raking/cleaning & whatever sand they consume for grit. you will not be dissapointed!!!!
  8. MakNugget

    MakNugget Songster

    May 31, 2010
    Portland, OR
    I have about 4" of sand in my run right now and I love it. I purposely sow scratch grains and boss in a small 12" patch covered in HW cloth and sprouts come up in 4 days. Elevate the HW cloth on some scrap wood for a 5th day and you'll have some nice greens for the girls to mow down, and plenty of seeds & roots to scratch up.

    We got 2 yards from a local supplier, it's not a very homogeneous mix as there are quite pea sized pebbles in it but the girls don't mind it at all.
  9. k2chickens

    k2chickens Songster

    Apr 22, 2009
    New Castle, Indiana
    Quote:Thanks for your input, but I'm a little confused on how sand is sold. All this yard talk makes it sound like your not buying very much sand at all. In my original post, I said this sand will be going inside an inclosed room "inside a barn" with plywood and cement walls with a cement floor. There is a step down from the entrance to tthe floor where they live...about 3 inches down. In the las post by "maknugget", I'm haveing a hard time understanding why your suggesting growing greens to me with nothing but a concret floor, floresent bulbs as light and nothing but sand? The concret floor room is 10 ft wide by 15ft long and I dnt really know how to do the math to figure out how much sand I need to buy to fill my floor at least 3 inches deep
    Last edited: Aug 17, 2010
  10. ducks4you

    ducks4you Songster

    Jan 20, 2009
    East Central Illinois
    I haven't looked into it, but I would suggest a truckload of sand delivered to your house, and use that. My run is 10 x 20, and it takes about 1,200 pounds of sand to cover it. That translates to 24, 50# bags at $3.99/bag--that's pricey.

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